COVID-19 hospitalizations hit record low, the CDC says

There were 5,615 COVID hospitalizations in the most recent week data available.

April 30, 2024, 3:16 PM

Weekly COVID-19 hospitalizations have hit their lowest level ever reported since the pandemic began, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

There were 5,615 COVID hospitalizations in the most recent week data that is available. In comparison, there were over 150,000 weekly admissions at the peak of the Omicron variant circulating in early 2022.

"The significant decline in COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths to these new lows is encouraging, showing that our public health measures and vaccination efforts have paid off," said Dr. John Brownstein, chief innovation officer at Boston Children’s Hospital and an ABC News medical contributor.

Forecasts of new hospitalizations from the CDC indicate that admissions will likely remain stable for the next four weeks.

"It’s important to continue monitoring for new variants and maintaining protective health behaviors to prevent possible surges," Brownstein added.

The news comes as the requirements for hospitals to report respiratory illness data, like COVID hospital admissions, expire at the end of April. Federal officials plan to use other data sources such as wastewater, laboratory tests and emergency department data to stay informed about the spread of illnesses.

"A key lesson we learned from the COVID-19 pandemic is the importance of having reporting systems in place before an active emergency," a CDC spokesperson said in part of a statement. "These data have a significant and ongoing value for protecting patient health and safety as well as public health," the statement continued.

Data from the CDC shows that about 22.6% of adults as well as 14% of children have received the updated COVID vaccine, which is formulated to better protect against current sub variants. Older adults over the age of 65 were recommended to receive an additional updated COVID vaccine this spring due to their increased risk of severe disease, according to the CDC.

The Food and Drug Administration’s independent panel of advisors is set to meet in mid-March to discuss the recommended strains to be selected in the next formulation of COVID vaccines. As the virus has evolved since the beginning of the pandemic, vaccines have been adjusted to better protect against current strains.

COVID deaths have also been steadily declining this year, reaching new lows. There were an estimated 231 deaths from COVID in the most recent week data that is available, according to the CDC. However, death data are delayed and may be incomplete.

At the height of the pandemic, there were over 25,000 Americans dying weekly from the virus as the Delta variant swept across the country.

"It's crucial that we maintain robust surveillance and data collection to quickly respond to any changes in the virus's behavior," Brownstein said.

Related Topics